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Thread: Article: 2013 Twins Spring Training Guide Part II: The Baseball

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    Senior Member All-Star Thrylos's Avatar
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    Article: 2013 Twins Spring Training Guide Part II: The Baseball

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  2. #2
    Good article.. I'm looking forward to more insights. I have a question for you.

    In spring training, I hear one of he best things to do is go in before the games begin to see the team practice. Once the games start, is there less of an opportunity to do that, or do they still have early morning practice? I'll be going down in mid-March, so as an alternative, I see there is an "OFF day" scheduled during the week I'll be down there. Does anyone know if there will be practice that day for minor leaguers or is it truly an off day?

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    Twins Moderator All-Star ChiTownTwinsFan's Avatar
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    Don't the Twins players have some kind of charity golf thing on their off day? Or maybe they do that earlier before games start. Can't remember.

    One thing to note about seating ... if you buy seats in the 2nd level (sections 203-206) on the 1st base side, about half way up and higher ... you stay in the shade for most/all of the game. Nothing in that stadium is that far away so it's not that 'nosebleedy.' After years of going to games there, that has become my 'preferred' area for day games. While the average temps might be around 80, towards the latter part of March I'd up that. Combined with sitting for a couple hours in the sun, surrounded by other bodies, it can feel even warmer. But if it's your first time there, get seats anywhere; you'll likely want to wander around anyway. Night games, of course I prefer the lower section. Do they still sell standing room tickets? I don't see that option, maybe they do that only after a game is officially sold out. But if they do offer that, you can get into the stadium, find a place, and 'scavenge' someone's seats when they leave the game early, or don't show up.

    Also, getting to the park on game day ... plan ahead and leave early! Parking fills up fast and you don't want to be one of those cars in line out on Six Mile Cypress into the early innings trying to get into the game. I can't stress it enough how bad traffic is that time of year. I've said it many times already and likely will again.

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    Senior Member All-Star Thrylos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bdhenders View Post
    Good article.. I'm looking forward to more insights. I have a question for you.

    In spring training, I hear one of he best things to do is go in before the games begin to see the team practice. Once the games start, is there less of an opportunity to do that, or do they still have early morning practice? I'll be going down in mid-March, so as an alternative, I see there is an "OFF day" scheduled during the week I'll be down there. Does anyone know if there will be practice that day for minor leaguers or is it truly an off day?
    They practice every day, esp. the minor leaguers. The off days and the days when the MLB team is playing away are actually the best days to watch the minor leaguers (and the major leaguers who were left behind) practice or play in minor league games. Some minor league teams (the minor leaguers are divided into very fluid AAA, AA, A+ and A squads) will play away but others will play at home. Usually there is at least one minor league game. Also the ones that are rookie level always practice (no games at that level) at the flield next to the clubhouse (the SW most field). Lots of players do infield practice with the likes of TK and Paul Molitor. Rookie pitchers usually do pitching drills.
    Great times to see some of the unknown players in the organization
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    Senior Member All-Star Thrylos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChiTownTwinsFan View Post
    Don't the Twins players have some kind of charity golf thing on their off day? Or maybe they do that earlier before games start. Can't remember.

    One thing to note about seating ... if you buy seats in the 2nd level (sections 203-206) on the 1st base side, about half way up and higher ... you stay in the shade for most/all of the game. Nothing in that stadium is that far away so it's not that 'nosebleedy.' After years of going to games there, that has become my 'preferred' area for day games. While the average temps might be around 80, towards the latter part of March I'd up that. Combined with sitting for a couple hours in the sun, surrounded by other bodies, it can feel even warmer. But if it's your first time there, get seats anywhere; you'll likely want to wander around anyway. Night games, of course I prefer the lower section. Do they still sell standing room tickets? I don't see that option, maybe they do that only after a game is officially sold out. But if they do offer that, you can get into the stadium, find a place, and 'scavenge' someone's seats when they leave the game early, or don't show up.

    Also, getting to the park on game day ... plan ahead and leave early! Parking fills up fast and you don't want to be one of those cars in line out on Six Mile Cypress into the early innings trying to get into the game. I can't stress it enough how bad traffic is that time of year. I've said it many times already and likely will again.
    Indeed. The traffic is an issue and great point about coming early. I guess I never been at the ballpark later than 10AM because I want to catch the minor leaguers play and some Twins taking BP outside the ballpark before the game.

    Great point about the shade. Last year temps were close to 90 in late March.

    Last season they did not sell standing room tickets. Not sure whether the RF walk space will be ready this season. If it is, I bet that will be standing room only. They do sell $10-12 tickets at the grass area at short RF.
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  6. #6
    Thanks for this guide! I'm considering going to ST for the first time this year to root on my favourite player as he tries to recover from major surgery - he's a nonroster invitee with the Twins.

    I'm considering going over President's Day weekend to avoid extra time off from work. Are there any special considerations with going that early in the preseason? I would just be going to take in the practices, which I understand are every day about 9am.

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    Senior Member All-Star Thrylos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rickenbacker View Post
    Thanks for this guide! I'm considering going to ST for the first time this year to root on my favourite player as he tries to recover from major surgery - he's a nonroster invitee with the Twins.

    I'm considering going over President's Day weekend to avoid extra time off from work. Are there any special considerations with going that early in the preseason? I would just be going to take in the practices, which I understand are every day about 9am.
    Actually, since your favorite player is a non-roster invitee, the earlier you go the better the chances you have to see him with the big team. But that would be just practicing because President's day (the 18th) is 5 days before their first game (the 23rd in Sarasota against the Orioles). The Twins will be practicing mostly at the North East most practice field (next to the Stadium) with occasional practices in the Stadium and the other fields. You might get to see some scrimmages as well; these are pretty fun.
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    Senior Member Triple-A Don't Feed the Greed Guy's Avatar
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    I would encourage anyone who makes the trip to take in one or two of the other parks in Central Fla. I've seen games at seven of the parks, and would rank Bright House Field (Phillies) in Clearwater at the top, and Space Coast Stadium (Nationals) at the bottom--although the location is great if you are sightseeing Cape Canaveral. Arrive early, and stick around late if you have kids that would like to get some autographs. My boys filled up their baseballs with signatures, and many pictures were taken with players and coaches, especially after the game by the locker rooms. Security controls the crowds, and the players are more than accomodating. Great fun for your little leaguer, and Dad too.

  9. #9
    When is part III of this series being published?

  10. #10
    Twins Moderator MVP ashburyjohn's Avatar
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    An aspect of the minor-league games I did not know about until my visit last year: these games play fast and loose with some of the rules you usually take for granted. At one game, for instance, one of the non-traveling major leaguers batted third in *every* inning, I guess to let him get his repetitions in. And sometimes innings get called after the pitcher has thrown a certain number of pitches and the manager doesn't want to deal with putting in a reliever to get the last out - talk about a rally killer! Probably people who have been several times can come up with more instances like these. I'm sure no one goes to these games thinking they are for keeps, but it's best to think of them as less of a game and more of situational practice against live pitching. Which is still plenty entertaining - for example there is on-the-spot instruction during a game that would be taken as showing up a player's mistake during the regular season - I still savor Tom Kelly's deadpan "let's keep the 360s to a minimum out there" after Darin Mastroianni took a less-than-optimal route to a flyball.

    Edit: with that business about pitch limits in an inning, I just remembered, when the limit was near, someone would yell across the field, "last batter!", much like in some forms of youth league play. And as with those youthful games, the last batter would keep running until some fielder could finally put him out. Just a little Spring Training wackiness.
    Last edited by ashburyjohn; 02-05-2013 at 05:42 PM.

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    Senior Member Big-Leaguer Oldgoat_MN's Avatar
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    Excellent article,Thrylos.
    Thank you

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